Keeping cool with ceramics, scanning art with medical technology and more! It’s Monday. Here’s NewsFile––your resource for top pots, news-y shards and current events from the world of contemporary ceramic art and contemporary ceramics.
Cool Off with Ceramics
The American Ceramic Society reports a team of faculty and staff from Iowa State University’s architecture department––inspired by Arabic lace screens––”created a 3-D-printed ceramic façade that can be used as part of a mechanical system to control the amount of light, privacy, airflow, and cooling in a building.”
“Mashrabiya 2.0,” is a 3D-printed ceramic façade that can be integrated into a building’s mechanical system to control light, airflow and privacy while offering evaporative cooling. The team was inspired by Arabic lace screens, replacing the traditional wood with 3D-printed ceramics.Iowa State University
The façade comes in three modules or shapes. Woven patterns on the screen wall create “micro-pores” that help ventilate and cool the space as air passes through.
Read more here.
Check it out in the video below:
Farewell to Lennie Berkowitz
Lennie Berkowitz (1929, Chicago, IL–2019 Kansas City, MO) Lennie graduated from the University of Illinois with a BA and a graduate degree from K.U. in special education. Lennie’s focus was the enrichment of other people’s lives through the arts, demonstrated by her time, energy and leadership in too many organizations to name.
Lennie was involved with a national conference highlighting ceramists from all over the United States, inspiring her and Garth Clark to open the first gallery dedicated solely to ceramic arts in Kansas City. The gallery began at her home in 1985 and later the Cohen-Berkowitz Gallery opened in 1994. Her love of the ceramics was infectious, a tireless champion of ceramics as art.
Read a full biography here.
Cutting Edge Medical Technology to Study Sculpture
With the help of new, advanced medical technology, Hyperallergic writes, the Art Institute of Chicago has been able to more accurately identify and date five terracotta sculptures from present-day Mali, with the help of the UChicago School of Medicine and a CT scanner.
The Bakoni figures, believed to be from between the late 12th-century and 15th century, are named for the Malian village in which they were discovered.Hyperallergic
Read more here.
Da Vinci’s Terracotta Statue a Model for Michelangelo
The Telegraph reports that “Experts are convinced that a recently discovered terracotta statue of the Virgin Mary cradling Jesus after his Crucifixion was the model for Michelangelo’s renowned ‘Pieta’ sculpture in marble, today in St Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican.”
Georges De Canino, an Italian art critic, said he was also convinced that the terracotta model, which was found by an art collector in a moldy box in an antiques shop in northern Italy eight years ago, was made by Michelangelo.
It took an art restorer, Loredana Di Marzio, three years to restore the piece, which was covered in multiple layers of paint and had been crudely mended with glue and Scotch tape. It was not an easy job because terracotta is a fragile material. But after a lot of patience, an extraordinary work emerged.
The statue was originally coated in nine layers of bright paint (as was often the case with classical sculpture), but during its laborious, three-year restoration process, the paint was stripped, revealing the plain terracotta beneath. Analysis shows that the terracotta figurine is made from an unusual mix of clay and a mineral called dolomite—a mineral found in the Apuan Alps of Tuscany, where Michelangelo frequently sourced his marble.
Read more here.
Ken Price at Georgia O’Keeffe Museum
As part of its ongoing Contemporary Voices series, the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe will feature works by ceramic artist Ken Price (1935- 2012). This striking installation will include a selection of Price’s sculptures presented in dialogue with art by Georgia O’Keeffe, the museum writes.
“The organic, sensual forms and colors of Price’s sculptures will be juxtaposed with O’Keeffe’s still life and landscape subjects. Even visitors who think they know these two artists well will have the chance to see each in a new light.”Ariel Plotek, O’Keefe Curator of Fine At
Additionally, a selection of Price’s works on paper will pair with watercolors by O’Keeffe. The installation will be on display from June 6 through October 27, 2019.
Roberto Lugo Awarded the 2019 Rome Prize
The American Academy in Rome has announced earlier this month this year’s Rome Prizes were awarded to 30 American and six Italian artists and scholars. Of them is American ceramist and activist Roberto Lugo.
Roberto Lugo is an American artist, social activist, spoken word poet and educator. Lugo’s work draws together hip-hop, history and politics into formal ceramics and 2D works, bringing new conversations to the table of contemporary art. Born in Kensington, Philadelphia to Puerto Rican parents, Lugo began his career as a graffiti artist before discovering ceramics. Growing up in North Philadelphia, Lugo’s life was riddled with the challenges of inner city youth, and his work depicts the clear story of how his eyes were opened to racial and cultural injustices at a young age. Confronting stereotype, civil rights, poverty and immigration, Lugo uses traditional porcelain forms to address issues that have affected and afflicted his life head on. “Today my graffiti is defacing social inequality,” Lugo says. “My experiences as an indigent minority inform my version of Puerto Rican American history. I bring art to those that do not believe they need to see it and engage in deeper ways of knowing, learning, and thinking.”Wexler Gallery
Wexler Gallery, which represents Lugo congratulates the artist on this outstanding achievement and opportunity.
These highly competitive fellowships support advanced independent work and research in the arts and humanities.
Read more here.
American Museums Fail in Artist Diversity
As reported by The Guardian, an extensive report from Williams College indicates that the collections of major American institutions are both 85% white and 87% male.
The study is the first large-scale study of its kind, according the head researcher and mathematics professor Chaz Topaz.
After white men, the largest groups were white women at 10.8%, Asian men at 7.5% and Hispanic men at 2.6%. Some institutions were marked outliers, including Atlanta’s High Museum of Art where 10.6% of artists are black compared with 1.2% across all recorded. The Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art all boasted the highest percentages of female artists.The Guardian
Data was taken from 18 major US museums, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and then 10,000 artist records were analyzed for demographic analysis.
Read more here.
Read the full study here.
Art Fair Unveils New Payment Model
A theme that emerged from Armory Week in New York is that the calendar of art fairs is jam-packed, as Nate Freeman wrote in Artsy. But now a new kind of fair presents a distinct approach and a fresh payment model––charging commission instead of booth fees, which tend to cripple galleries during fair season.
Opening in Brooklyn’s Bushwick neighborhood in May, Object & Thing is an art-meets-design fair where editioned objects will be sold next to sculptures, with prices ranging from $1,000 to $50,000. There’s a component called The Shop, with items that are below $100 dollars, including books and foodstuffs. It’s in a space with no booths or partitions and the items for sale are also available for purchase on an e-commerce site.Artsy
Read more from Artsy here.
Check our Object & Thing here.
Journalist and Critic Roberta Smith Honored
The Dorothea and Leo Rabkin Foundation has given its first lifetime achievement award to journalist Roberta Smith, the co-chief art critic of the New York Times, Artnews writes.
Smith has been on staff at the Times since 1991. Prior to that, her writing appeared in Artforum, Art in America, and the Village Voice. She is widely respected as one of the preeminent art critics in America.Artnews
Read more here.
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